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What is Light Reflective Value (LRV)?

The definition of Light Reflective Value (LRV) is the percentage of light something reflects, this can be affected by the colour and texture of an item. White would be 100% as it reflects 100% of the light, whereas black would be considered 0% as it reflects none of the light. Light Reflective Value is used to predict how light or dark something will appear, and therefore how easy it will be to see it.

How is the Light Reflective Value measured?

Predominantly, light reflective values are measured using spectrophotometer, tristimulus colourimeter, or other reflectometer, such as an integrating sphere.

At CAT we use an integrated sphere spectrophotometer to test the product finishes, to ensure that the products we provide to our clients adhere to regulations and LRV standard guidance.

You can also find the LRV for our Stair Nosings on our technical data sheets for all of our tread inserts and their colours.

Why is it important to measure the LRV when installing Stair Nosings?

One of the most important reasons behind measuring the LRV and ensuring you are adhering to regulations is so that people who are partially sighted can see the contrast in where one step ends and the one below begins. If there is not a 30-point difference, then it makes it a lot more difficult for people who are partially sighted to see the contrast in stair edge. Utilising a stair nosing and infill that offer the correct amount of contrast means that you make it safer, and you are adhering to regulations.

This is relevant to a wide range of non-residential buildings including, hospitals, schools, hotels, theatres, etc.

What is the specific current guidance/regulations?

The current guidance in the regulations BS8300:2009 is that adequate visual contrast is provided if the Light Reflectance Value (LRV) of the contrasting areas exceeds 30 points, “i.e., the contrast between the stair edging and the floor covering”.

For example, there should be a 30-point different between the flooring and the stair nosings, so if your flooring has an LRV of 60, then your stair nosing must be either 0-30 or 90-100, which will create enough contrast for the step to be more visually clear.

Installation Example: A polished Aluminium Stair Nosing with LRV 75.55 installed with a Castellated PVC Infill in White, with LRV of 84.22 on a flooring with an LRV of 32 would comply with the regulation, as the difference between the stair nosing, including the infill and your chosen flooring is greater than 30 points.

CAT Light Reflective Values:

Castellated & Textured PVC Infills


Castellated: LRV 4.25
Textured: LRV 4.47


Castellated: LRV 7.02
Textured: LRV 7.14


Castellated: LRV 5.88
Textured: LRV 6.04


Castellated: LRV 6.38
Textured: LRV 6.59


Castellated: LRV 5.83
Textured: LRV 6.09


Castellated: LRV 84.22
Textured: LRV 88.85


Castellated: LRV 5.16
Textured: LRV 5.37


Castellated: LRV 5.52
Textured: LRV 5.79


Castellated: LRV 7.33
Textured: LRV 7.52

Porth Stone

Castellated: LRV 52.91
Textured: LRV 53.11

Light Grey

Castellated: LRV 12.33
Textured: LRV 12.74

Mid Blue

Castellated: LRV 6.53
Textured: LRV 6.71


Castellated: LRV 11.27
Textured: LRV 11.53


Castellated: LRV 54.91
Textured: LRV 55.11

Polar Grey

Castellated: LRV 42.53
Textured: LRV 42.73


Castellated: LRV 11.27
Textured: LRV 11.66


Castellated: LRV 4.77
Textured: LRV 4.95


Castellated: LRV 37.42
Textured: LRV 37.65


Castellated: LRV 10.01
Textured: LRV 10.24

Brass Finishes & Infills

Polished Brass

Av. LRV 71.45

Satin Brass

Av. LRV 59.55

Mill/Matt Brass

Av. LRV 60.55

Antique Brass

Av. LRV 29.55

Antique Bronze

Av. LRV 9.15

Chrome Finishes


Av. LRV 63.60

Satin Chrome

Av. LRV 44.85

Stainless Steel Finishes

Mill Stainless Steel

Av. LRV 58.02

Bright/Polished Stainless Steel

Av. LRV 62.00

Brushed/Satin Stainless Steel

Av. LRV 53.70

Aluminium Finishes & Infills

Mill/Matt Aluminium & Matt Silver

Av. LRV 71.65

Polished Aluminium

Av. LRV 75.55

Satin Aluminium

Av. LRV 65.40

Black Anodised Aluminium

Av. LRV 4.80

Designer Collection Finishes & Infills

Light Bronze

LRV 27.25


LRV 10.10

Designer Home Collection Finishes

Brushed Stainless

LRV: 41.45


LRV: 81.95


LRV: 10.10

Light Bronze

LRV: 27.25


LRV: 10.75

Onyx Black

LRV: 5.20

Designer Satin

LRV: 65.30

Olympic Carborundum Infills


LRV 4.76


LRV 47.07


LRV 58.45

Olympic Grip Tape


LRV: 4.85

PVC Finishes


LRV: 4.47


LRV: 7.14

Light Grey


Polar Grey

LRV: 42.73


LRV 88.85